Rolling Dog Ranch Animal Sanctuary
Deaf Tyler Deaf Tyler points at just about anything that flies - birds, butterflies … even an occasional snowflake.
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Wobbles the kitten with a neurological disorder

A shelter volunteer in Moses Lake, Washington, e-mailed us about an 8-week old kitten who had difficulty standing and walking. He could move around, but flopped over a lot. The shelter’s vet said the muscles in the kitten’s hind legs and pelvic region had not developed properly. Could we take the kitten?

A few days later the little tyke arrived at the sanctuary. We set him on the floor and watched him wobble across the room. His new name came instantly: Wobbles.

He had already learned how to compensate for his lack of motor skills: He set his tiny legs far apart for stability, and held his little tail sticking straight up for better balance. Even so, he could take only a few steps before toppling over. Then he’d pick himself up and start all over again.

To us Wobbles seemed to have a neurological issue, not a muscle problem. We took Wobbles to our vets in Helena for an exam. Sure enough, our specialist diagnosed his condition as a neurological disorder known as cerebellar hypoplasia.

Wobbles’ mother most likely had the feline panleukopenia virus when she was pregnant, and this interferes with the development of the cerebellum in the kittens in the womb. So the result is that the part of the brain that deals with balance and motor skills never fully developed.

He may not be steady on his feet, but Wobbles sure can get around fine. He is energetic, playful, and comes with an “auto purr” function: pick him up and he starts purring. Wobbles loves to reach out and grab our legs as we walk by. And one of h is favorite things is to do is sit under Steve’s desk while he works and chew on his shoes.

Wobbles’ best friends are Birdie, our young Lab with muscular dystrophy, and Widget, our blind Beagle/Dachshund mix. After an exhausting round of play, dogs and kitten will fall asleep together. In the photo above you can see Wobbles and Birdie taking an afternoon siesta with each other.

We’ll never be able to call Wobbles a real “stand-up guy,” but this little youngster should enjoy a long … if unbalanced … life here at the ranch.

New Arrivals
Timmy the paralyzed dog
Joey the blind dog
Hannah the blind horse
Luke the blind dog
Claire the wobbly cat
Turtle the blind cat and Mink the wobbly cat
Snowball the deaf cat
Wobbles the kitten with a neurological disorder
Bobby the blind cat


©2005 Rolling Dog Ranch Animal Sanctuary